Available June 1, 1994

Forms Of Distance

Poetry by Bei Dao

Translated by David Hinton

An exile in the West since the events of Tiananmen Square, Bei Dao is widely considered China’s most distinguished poet. In this new collection, he goes beyond the poetry of exile and reaches a new level of maturity and synthesis in a series of kaleidoscopic images of the end of the twentieth century. These poems, a conflation of history and personal happenstance, are explorations of individual, emotional, physical, and cultural distance that speak to an international readership in an ever more divided world. Bei Dao’s poems are translated with new sharpness and intensity by David Hinton, highly regarded for his versions of the chinese classics (The Selected Poems of Tu Fu, The Selected Poems of T’ao Ch’ien), who comments in his Translator’s Note: “Bei Dao’s work recalls China’s ancient masters: clear resonant images set in sharp juxtapositions. But his are decidedly modern clarities, adrift on the terrible mystery of today’s world-historical forces.”

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Bei Dao

Contemporary Chinese poet, representative of the Misty Poets.